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Excavators from the Mount Zion Archaeological Project have announced the discovery of evidence of the Babylonian conquest of Jerusalem in 587/586 BC. While digging in an Iron Age structure within the old city walls, they unearthed layers of ash that contained arrowheads, lamps, potsherds, and a piece of gold and silver jewelry. The arrowheads, known as "Scythian arrowheads," were commonly used by Babylonian soldiers, having been found at other sites. The jewelry may have been a tassel or an earing, and appears to depict a silver bunch of grapes attached to a gold clasp. It testifies to the biblical description of the wealth of Jerusalem prior to Nebuchadnezzar's destruction of the city. The pottery that was discovered in the ash layer helped date the finds. While the discovery of an ash layer does not automatically point to the Babylonian destruction, the excavators of the Mount Zion Archaeological Project believe the layer can be dated to this event because of the unique collection of artifacts and the context in which they were found. Archaeologist Shimon Gibson states: "It's the kind of jumble that you would expect to find in a ruined household following a raid or battle: household objects, lamps, broken bits from pottery which had been overturned and shattered, and arrowheads and a piece of jewelry which might have been lost and buried in the destruction." This discovery affirms again the destruction of Jerusalem under Nebuchadnezzar described in 2 Kings 25.

Off-site Links:

- https://inside.uncc.edu/news-features/2019-08-12/evidence-587586-bce-babylonian-conquest-jerusalem-found-mount-zion
- https://www.jpost.com/Israel-News/Archaeological-discovery-helps-prove-Babylonian-conquest-of-Israel-598543
- https://www.timesofisrael.com/new-jerusalem-finds-are-evidence-of-babylonian-siege-archaeologists-say/
- https://www.haaretz.com/archaeology/.premium-rare-jewel-found-on-mt-zion-reveals-babylonian-destruction-of-jerusalem-1.7658563

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ABRT 28 | 8/1/2019